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September 2013 IOTM - DOXY

thesaxman71

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As it will be the 1st month of the new format starting in September i am giving it a little head start now by letting everyone know the the tune i will be putting forward for people to work on, this also gives me a little extra time in case of any "teething problems".

1....the tune will be "DOXY"

http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature...&v=VDvk3NigkvI
I chose this tune for a number of reasons being that it has a great melody and harmony which at first may seem a little testing for some but i assure you when you get into the "swing" of it you will hopefully like this tune and add it to a list of tunes that should be logged to memory as in time some may encounter this tune being pulled out in a jam session or some other setting.

About the melody and structure in brief.

The melody is mainly based on intervals of 3rds, arpeggiated figures that revolve around an ''altered bebop blues'' progression in Bb concert.
Before people scratch heads wondering what the above description means I know a lot or most may have never come across this kind of description "altered bebop blues progression" so I will just break it all down so we all don't need to worry too much about it and can improvise over it with ease.
For Tenor it is in C and for Alto it is in G and all you need to do for a basic start on improvisation for this piece is to think of it as a simple "12 bar blues" progression in the key you are in (tenor -C, Alto - G)
Basically I am asking people to get a grasp of their basic "blues scales" with this months selection.

2...Exercise for "DOXY" is going to be learning the pentatonic blues scale notes for Tenor and/or Alto with my numerical breakdown in relation to it's major scale.

C blues for Tenor: C-Eb-F-F#-G-Bb-C in C major try to think 1-flat3-4-sharp4-5-flat7-1*

G blues for Alto: G-Bb-C-C#-D-F-G in G major try to think 1-flat3-4-sharp4-5-flat7-1*

* this number formula can be applied to all keys to work out your pentatonic blues scale if you simply think of the numbers being as to which note of the major scale to start on.

good luck and i hope this is explained well enough, i can understand still if anyone may be still a little confused so feel free to PM me your questions so i can answer personally and also simply so we don't clog up the thread before it starts.

p.s.
I will start the new "DOXY" thread in September, and i will cut and paste the above information there too. This is just a head start for people to look at.
thanks,
Ian
 

thesaxman71

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I have done a brief recording of Doxy, not a full version but about a minute and a half long just to outline how using of the blues scale can be used over this more complex chord structure and how also using the basic key signature of Doxy you can integrate the blues scale into it with good effect.

I am not playing an over complicated solo or adding any other notes than the basic key signature and the blues scale on either instrument purposely so you can hear how it works to good effect using the blues scale here.

The demo is as follows: 16 bars alto & tenor melody -> 16 bars alto solo -> 16 bars tenor solo to fade.
Doxy demo: https://soundcloud.com/ian-t-thesaxm...cafe-saxophone

(also posted in the sound clips section to try and entice others to join in this thread)
 
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thesaxman71

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As mentioned in post # 1, the IOTM is "Doxy", a 16 bar melody with a slightly more complex chord sequence but my aim is to show you how you can think of this chord sequence in a much simpler way when approaching improvisation and to bypass the tricky chords (for now) by applying a common blues scale which gives it a nice blues feel to your improvisation.

The aim of the exercise is to get to grips with the COMMON blues scale as this is the basis of most jazz improvisation.
If more advanced players wish to take part then that is great as this is open to all but please be aware this is aimed in such a way that I am stripping back the whole improvisation process and starting from a basic start point.

Link to Bb & Eb parts and backing track:https://www.dropbox.com/sh/s4vnpgioj2vfboi/8iZBQct183


note:

This is not meant as a "improvisation course" that i am teaching, i simply cannot devote that time so I am doing my best to offer tips and suggestions by drawing from my own methods and approach to improvisation and adaptations that are coming from a background in higher education in jazz and actual work as a teacher/lecturer in this subject. The approach i have has done me no harm in my professional career as a musician.

P.S.
Let's all just have FUN with this IOTM in general and not make it too "nit-picky" or "overly serious" but still productive enough and enjoyable as i think music is meant to be enjoyed overall!

Thanks
Ian
 
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thesaxman71

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Best starting this as a fresh thread, so as mentioned let's all just have some bluesy fun with Doxy.
 

thesaxman71

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@Chris - a very "Getz like" version with soft tone and subtle adaptation of the melody. I heard a few little snippets of the blues scale in there too mixed in with a nice simplistic swinging pentatonic feel overall, maybe i would suggest to accent more of the blues scale and particular outlining that flat 7, b3 and #4/b5 sound and play around with the improvisation rhythm using some syncopation which will give it a more "gritty blues" feel when added to the mentioned blue notes.
As i have said several times, in such a short space of time i have heard a vast improvement overall, going great there Chris.

Ian
 
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B Flat

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@Chris: Great start to this very useful thread. Again with that smooth style and tone of yours that makes the tune your own.
Nick.
 

Kobi

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Here is my rendition of this fun tune:
https://soundcloud.com/kobirivlin/doxy
I am interested in learning from you all, so any feedback is welcomed.
Kobi
 
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thesaxman71

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Here is my rendition of this fun tune:
https://soundcloud.com/kobirivlin/doxy
I am interested in learning from you all, so any feedback is welcomed.
Kobi
A WX5 take, i didn't see that coming but sounded very swinging and not easy to make those sound realistic but you did really well there.
I noticed about 3 or 4 different quotes, pop goes the weasel etc etc, always a fun element to add. you have the blues scale inter linked well throughout so melodically in the improvisation you have it covered well, as i suggested with Chris i would use more syncopation to mix up the improvisation instead of playing on the beat so much, playing around with rhythm is sometimes overlooked but it a great way to build tension and to make solo's more unique, if you notice in my brief demo above i deliberately 'hold back' when coming into the solo on the alto and 'jump in' when bringing the tenor solo in, this is to give different feel and tension on each sax (i am covering more on rhythm and syncopation next month).

Ian
 
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Jamesmac

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Great Kobi. +1 to Ian. But I don't know about learning anything from me, but I enjoyed your warm Legato Tenor . The only thing I noticed was that occasionally you lose the rhythm, which I do as well when Im concentrating on the notes. :thumb:
Also I'm very pleased with Ian's constructive comments, which is for me a breath of fresh air. Sometimes the back slapping sugary comments are a bit too much.
 

visionari1

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Well done Kobi,

That was a more than competent job, pretty smooth and lyrical.

Plenty for me to learn therefore, I don't have much constructive feed back.
Good tone too!

Must have a bash....at this...soon!
 

Jamesmac

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1,872
Here is my rendition of this fun tune:
https://soundcloud.com/kobirivlin/doxy
I am interested in learning from you all, so any feedback is welcomed.
Kobi

PS Kobi. I forgot to ask which Tenor patch you are using. I use the VL70 with the patchman chip and the EWI, but up to now have not been happy with the Tenor Patches. Thanks
 
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Kobi

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Great Kobi. +1 to Ian. But I don't know about learning anything from me, but I enjoyed your warm Legato Tenor . The only thing I noticed was that occasionally you lose the rhythm, which I do as well when Im concentrating on the notes. :thumb:
Also I'm very pleased with Ian's constructive comments, which is for me a breath of fresh air. Sometimes the back slapping sugary comments are a bit too much.
I do get carried away with solo ideas and loose rhythm. Thanks for the feedback and I do agree critical feedback is crucial for learning.

PS Kobi. I forgot to ask which Tenor patch you are using. I use the VL70 with the patchman chip and the EWI, but up to now have not been happy with the Tenor Patches. Thanks
I use Sample Modeling SWAM Tenor VSTi patch was tweaked for tone and response to my liking, over last few months of trial and error. It is the best I found, but still has some minor issues in some transitions. Since it is a combination of samples and modeling, it sounds more realistic than VL70, which is only modeled.

A WX5 take, i didn't see that coming but sounded very swinging and not easy to make those sound realistic but you did really well there.
I noticed about 3 or 4 different quotes, pop goes the weasel etc etc, always a fun element to add. you have the blues scale inter linked well throughout so melodically in the improvisation you have it covered well, as i suggested with Chris i would use more syncopation to mix up the improvisation instead of playing on the beat so much, playing around with rhythm is sometimes overlooked but it a great way to build tension and to make solo's more unique, if you notice in my brief demo above i deliberately 'hold back' when coming into the solo on the alto and 'jump in' when bringing the tenor solo in, this is to give different feel and tension on each sax (i am covering more on rhythm and syncopation next month).

Ian
Thanks for the feedback. I knew there was something missing with tension and this is great tip about syncopation for me to work on.
 

Chris

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I'll post some more version as the next few weeks pass.

Kobi, I liked the WX5 take, like Ian the quotes made me smile..

Chris..
 

Kobi

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I'll post some more version as the next few weeks pass.

Kobi, I liked the WX5 take, like Ian the quotes made me smile..

Chris..
Thanks Chris,

I am a big fan of Dexter Gordon and he always had lots of quotes and I find it is a great way to spice the improvisation and make people smile :).
 

Jamesmac

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Ian. .My Doxy for your perusal.
And fellow doxy posters.


https://soundcloud.com/musicato/doxy
 
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thesaxman71

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@Jamesmac - I like the use of space and syncopation and a general build up through your solo and i can hear you have incorporated the blues scale in there and you are nailing those blues notes no problem but one thing i do suggest, even tho this IOTM focus is the "blues scale", that even tho you are hitting the blues notes it sounds a little bit "stiff" to me, especially in the melody at the start, I may as well quickly point it out now to you as being able to swing smoothly and more laid back is very important so try and "lay back" a bit behind the beat even over do it at first til you find that sweet spot of a groove to fit into to give it that swinging feel it needs. As your improvisation went on and you were warmed up more it did loosen up a little and seem a little less stiff. I really do like too the fact you are playing with the rhythm and space a lot which in time will really serve you well for future improvisation idea's as this is a very good approach to keeping it fresh, adding that approach to finding your 'swing groove' will put you in the right direction to be a good improviser with great variation.
Thanks for posting,
Ian
 

Jamesmac

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1,872
@Jamesmac - I like the use of space and syncopation and a general build up through your solo and i can hear you have incorporated the blues scale in there and you are nailing those blues notes no problem but one thing i do suggest, even tho this IOTM focus is the "blues scale", that even tho you are hitting the blues notes it sounds a little bit "stiff" to me, especially in the melody at the start, I may as well quickly point it out now to you as being able to swing smoothly and more laid back is very important so try and "lay back" a bit behind the beat even over do it at first til you find that sweet spot of a groove to fit into to give it that swinging feel it needs. As your improvisation went on and you were warmed up more it did loosen up a little and seem a little less stiff. I really do like too the fact you are playing with the rhythm and space a lot which in time will really serve you well for future improvisation idea's as this is a very good approach to keeping it fresh, adding that approach to finding your 'swing groove' will put you in the right direction to be a good improviser with great variation.
Thanks for posting,
Ian

Thanks for the comments Ian. I see what your saying. Re. Stiff. With the tune I played it detached to try and give it more energy, but with legato it would have sounded less stiff. Normally when I play a ballad I am usually behind the beat ( too much listening to Francis Albert . LOL ) The interesting thing for me Re. The impro bit. and you mentioned to play more behind the beat. The blues scale for me in a mid tempo beat kinda reminds me of more rock and roll rather than jazz.
( johnny be good) type of playing, hence the reason for the strict timing. For some reason playing a detached blues scale makes me play like that. Thanks for pointing it out.
 

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